Monday, January 21, 2013

Bouncer Post #58

Genre: YA Fantasy
Word Count: 77,000


Zeus becomes the king of the Greek gods, but few know how he developed his powers to control the heavens.

When Zeus’ failure to follow rules causes the sun deity, to attack his family on Crete, Zeus's mother is left unconscious and his best friend is dead. Zeus soon realizes that in this pre-human world where only gods exist, duality exists at every turn. The woman who raised him on Crete, was never really his mother at all, but to ensure her safety while she recovers, he must leave her behind and seek answers at Mount Olympus Preparatory Academy.  

Zeus embarks on a quest to find his real mother, discover who ordered the attack on his home, and avenge the death of his friend. When some of his new schoolmates vanish, though, searching for them forces him to abandon his initial quest. A wicked turn of events reveals that rival school Headmaster, Cronus, is not only responsible for the Crete attack, he is also behind the abductions. To gain the power he needs to defeat Cronus, Zeus must access the power of The Sky Throne, but doing so could kill him.

THE SKY THRONE was accepted into the prestigious Nevada SCBWI Mentor Program, where I was mentored by Suzanne Morgan Williams from May 2012 to October 2012. I am an active member of SCBWI, having attended regional and national conferences. I am also a member of the Historical Novel Society, and American Authors Association.

First 250:

The distance between darkness and light was a split-second, my mother once told me. A sliver of space. The breadth of a strand of hair. I didn’t know what she’d meant until today. And still wished I didn’t.

I relaxed on the beach beside a pearl-skinned sea nymph. Entranced by her beauty, I’d lost track of the moon’s flight. A single star shone defiantly against the vast indigo, which now receded from a coral horizon.

My friend Anytos stood in the surf, embracing another nymph. After she swam away into the white-capped waves, Tos turned. A smile dimpled his cheeks until he caught me looking. He quickly stowed his grin before he reached me.

“All right, Zeus. C’mon,” Tos said. “We need to get going.”

I looked up. “Just because you already sent your girl on her way, don’t come over here ruining my good time.”

He was right, though. We’d been out way longer than the other times I’d dragged him to the sea’s edge. In my defense, no matter how long we’d stayed out before, we always made it back on time. I could afford to steal a few more moments.

Tos kicked the bottom of my feet. “I promised Amalthea I’d keep you safe. Let’s go.”

“Safe from what, some demonic sheep from the other side of the island?” I asked. Every morning, the same drill; get back to the cave before someone sees you. “I’m not going anywhere.”

“Zeus, seriously. Look at the sky. We need to go!”


  1. Why doesn't this have a million comments and why isn't this availble in my book store? This so awesome! I would totally read more and buy this! The query had amazing voice, as did the first 250! I'd totally read on! Good luck!

  2. I really love the sound of this!!

    The one thing I would suggest is to watch repeating words in the query. That's been pointed out to me a lot.

    Good luck!!

  3. I love your first 250. Having a Greek retelling from the perspective of a teenage boy (Zeus) is a fresh angle. The sea nymphs cracked me up.

    I think you can tighten the language in your query. I'd try to omit generalities -- e.g., "duality exists at every turn," "a wicked turn of events." Also, it would be great if you could inject more voice into the query.

    Good luck! -- Monica (#69)

  4. Howdy,

    At first I was worried when I heard this was a novel about greek gods. (scares me thinking about how Percy Jackson and the heroes of olympus are HUGE). BUT, you took a new twist with this, so props!

    Your query can use a bit of tightening, but it does have a good voice and you give us all the details. As Monica said above, avoid being too vague. We want to hear some of those gut wrenching moments so we can read about them in your book!

    Your bio section was great too - definitely attractive!

    I wish I had something to comment in regards to your 250, but I really enjoyed it and it had such a great flow and I really felt absorbed into the story already. Sounds like a lot of fun and def. would want to read more.

    Great job with this and good luck!

    -Copernicus (post #43)

  5. You have some very nice writing in your first page—the first three paragraphs have a lovely poetic feel. However, when the characters began talking, I was surprised by how slangy and colloquial their speech felt, which to me didn’t fit with the previous descriptions. And then the tone of your query doesn’t seem to match the poetry of your descriptions or the more modern-teen feel of the dialogue—unfortunately, I found it rather dry and hard to engage with.

    My suggestion is that you think about what you want the principal tone of the book to be, work on making that consistent within the story, and then try to write a query that reflects that tone.

    Best of luck!